Month: November 2013

November
25

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Surprised? Really?! – Digital Money

Okay. Okay. If you’ve been trekking through Siberia or Patagonia for about a year, then maybe it surprised you to hear the minutes from the Federal Reserve Open Market Committee meeting showed it expects to begin tapering Quantitative Easing (QE) in the coming months. However, since the Fed has been telling anyone who will listen…

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November
25

Provided by: Jon McGraw

We’ve certainly had a decent run in U.S. equities. Aren’t things expensive?

We brought up this same question back in August, and markets have just continued higher from that point. That’s really the issue with trying to time markets and waiting to invest when things ‘feel’ better. Too many investors fall prey to this consistently: waiting until every problem in the world has been solved is usually…

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November
25

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Notes – November 25, 2013

(+) Retail sales rose +0.4% for October, which exceeded expectations of a +0.1% increase. Removing the usually volatile automobile, gasoline and building materials components pushed the gain up to +0.5%, which also outperformed the consensus forecast of +0.3%. The monthly results were led by a +1.3% increase in auto/auto parts sales. As we look at…

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November
18

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Market highs & Lump sum distributions

If you found holiday songs or Beatles tunes humming through your head last week, it may have been your subconscious processing world and market events. Over the river and through the woods/To Grandmother’s house we go… Janet Yellen, current Vice Chairman and nominee to be the next Chairman of the Federal Reserve System, testified at…

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November
18

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Notes – November 18, 2013

A week shortened by Veteran’s Day left us with fewer data points than usual, but enough to weave a story around. (0/+) Industrial production fell -0.1% in October, which was a bit of a surprise considering expectations called for a +0.2% increase. Much of this was due to a 3% drop in natural gas utilities…

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November
11

Provided by: Jon McGraw

The Fed chairman and Governors are often out speaking. Aren’t they giving away their secrets?

The Fed chair, governors and district presidents find themselves in the unique positions of not only being policymakers and ‘deciders’ of Fed policy, but also as proponents of the banking system and in pseudo-public relations roles, especially when Fed policies have been more controversial.  In recent years, many of these speaking engagements have added additional…

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November
11

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Notes – November 11, 2013

All things considered economic numbers came in fairly well last week – and the stock markets followed suit. (+/0) The advance GDP figure for the third quarter came in at +2.8%, which dramatically surpassed consensus expectations of +2.0% or so. However, much of the positive impact (0.8% of that 2.8%) came from larger inventory accumulation…

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November
04

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Inflation Conundrum & State Tax stackup

Exceptional… exceeds expectations… meets expectations… needs improvement… unsatisfactory. It’s a rating system familiar to anyone who has ever received a performance review. Right now, the performance of inflation is not meeting expectations – and that may be a good thing. Critics of loose monetary policy and rock bottom interest rates have had high expectations for…

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November
04

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Where do we stand with inflation and why are small changes such a big deal?

As noted in the recent CPI release, inflation has certainly remained tempered as of late. After a few deflationary year-over-year results during the troughing of the financial crisis, the average 12-month rolling inflation number has hovered just over 2% in the last three years. To put it into perspective, the average year-over-year change in U.S. inflation…

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November
04

Provided by: Jon McGraw

Economic Notes – November 4, 2013

Since we’re no longer playing ‘catch-up’ with the economic data, there happened to be a lot of it. (+) The Chicago PMI rose significantly higher over the past month, from September’s 55.7 to 65.9 in October (surpassing a forecasted flattish 55.0 level). Notably, this was the largest monthly increase in some 30 years. While no…

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